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From The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
February 6, 2020

Corticosteroids in Community-Acquired Pneumonia

JAMA. Published online February 6, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.0216

Recently updated guidelines from the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) address the use of corticosteroids as an adjunct to antimicrobials for treatment of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP).1

Data showing a clinically significant mortality benefit of corticosteroids in the treatment of patients with severe CAP are limited. Some meta-analyses have found a reduced risk of death with corticosteroid use in such patients,2-4 but others have not,5,6 and the studies included in the meta-analyses varied in their quality and their definitions of severe CAP (Box).